December 2, 2008
The bubbas…

The bubbas…

moke dat yigarette

A friend of mine sent me an email today urging me to call my legislators in support of comprehensice smoke-free legislation. Currently the law permits some exemptions for bars, restaurants, casinos and similar venues. I responded thusly:

"Thanks for this notification. I will call tomorrow. However, I will be calling my legislators to inform them that I support exemptions to the smokefree ban for bars, restaurants, casinos and other recreational venues where people gather socially.

While I do not condone or recommend smoking as a habit it, along with a dozen other societal ills I could name (some of which are potentially far more damaging to my personal health), is something I put up with because I realize that I must in order to live in a free society where personal liberty has value.

For example, drunk driving kills approximately the same number of people each year as second hand smoke (fatalities from which are difficult to prove conclusively but which I will grant you for the sake of statistics) but why aren’t we trying to shut all the bars down?

If you want to open a smoke free bar by all means go ahead. If you want to vote economically by only spending your money at other smoke free establishments that is certainly your right. But it is wrong to force a privately owned business to conform to this policy. Just as Prohibition was wrong.

I don’t like it when the majority tries to ram their mores down my throat. I don’t like it when they do it to women, I don’t like it when they do it to gays. I don’t like it when they do it to smokers, drinkers, carnivores, herbivores or any other group. And frankly people who support this type of legislation are no better than the people who defeated prop 8 in CA in my opinion.

The majority of my fellow citizens do things that annoy me 24 hours a day but in general I do not feel it gives me license to outlaw them. And smokefree bans in bars and casinos are particularly absurd. As if to say, “Here society, enjoy these vices but no, no, not this one!”

Seriously, would you like to gamble all your money away and impoverish your family? Go right ahead. Would you like to imbibe in several alcoholic beverages and perchance kill someone with your vehicle on the way home? Who are we to stand in your way? You want to smoke a little rolled tobaxxo which might possibly have a negative health impact on a small percentage of our drunken gamblers at some nebulous point in the future? Are you INSANE?”